Monday, July 15, 2019

I Know I'm One, Do You?

Cowboy Curtis Action Figure, Herman Toys, 1987

No, the title of this post is not paraphrasing Pee-wee Herman's often-spoken line on the 1980s Pee-wee Herman Show, "I know you are, but what am I?"


Along with statues of deer, Pee-wee Herman's front yard on The Pee-wee Herman Show was cluttered with other animals and figures as illustrated above.

Raising a male child of the 80s, The Pee-wee Herman Show was often on in our house when it aired. My son, who was around 4 when he began watching the show, used to think Pee-wee Herman lived in a house on our street.  Like Herman's house on the show, one of our neighbors had a pair of deer statues on their front lawn.  Each time we'd drive past that ranch-style house, my son would exclaim, "There's Pee-wee Herman's house!" and I'd always say, "No it's not. Pee-wee doesn't live there." In hindsight, I should have explained to him that the neighbor had deer statues like the ones on the show.  (The statues are no longer there.  So I assume different people reside there now.)

Even though this post includes a picture of a Cowboy Curtis figure that is fashioned after the role played by Laurence Fishburne on The Pee-wee Herman Show as well as a photo of Pee-wee's house, the show is not the subject of this post.

I was recently required to write an introduction of myself to a non-doll-collecting audience.  The introduction ended with the following statement, "I am a plangonologist (I collect dolls)."

If you collect dolls, did you know that's what you are? It's an odd, infrequently used word.  When it is used, most people do not know the meaning.  I encourage all fellow doll collectors to embrace this term.  The next time someone asks about your hobby, and particularly if they give you any hint of side-eye or appear to question your sanity, let them know you are a plangonologist.  Boldly proclaim it and paraphrase Pee-wee if you'd like by saying, "I'm a plangonologist, what are you?"

__________

There are other infrequently used names for people who collect all types of objects.  If you collect things other than dolls, some of the terms listed below might describe you:

  • Arctophile, Arctophillist: A lover or collector of teddy-bears.
  • Aurelian - Collector of butterflies or moths.
  • Bibliophile - Collector or connoisseur of books.
  • Cartophilist - Collector of cigarette cards etc.
  • Conchologist - An expert in or collector of shells.
  • Copoclephile - A collector of key-rings.
  • Deltiologist - Collector of postcards.
  • Discophile - Collector of gramophone records.
  • Exlibrist - Collector of bookplates.
  • Iconophile - Connoisseur or collector of book illustrations, engravings, etc.
  • Lepidopterist - Expert in or collector of butterflies and moths.
  • Notaphilist - Collector of banknotes.
  • Numismatist - Expert in or collector of coins.
  • Oologist - Expert in or collector of bird's eggs.
  • Paroemiographer - Writer or collector of proverbs.
  • Phillatelist - Collector of postage stamps.
  • Phillumenist - Collector of matches, matchboxes, and books of matches.
  • Porcelainist - Connoisseur or collector of porcelain.
  • Tegestologist - Collector of beermats.
  • Virtuoso - A collector of works of fine art or curios.
Source of the above list:  https://everything2.com/title/Names+for+Collectors

The first section of this page allows you to guess the meanings of the terms used to describe various collectors.

Check out some plangonologist products that I added to Zazzle.

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Black Dolls for Black Kids - Africa

Screen snapshot from Africa News

Mark Ruffin, founder of Black Dolls Matter™ tagged me in a Facebook post announcing this  video coverage of the July 8, 2019, Africa News article, "Black Dolls for Black Kids."

The significance of black children owning black dolls has reached the Motherland, and as Mark indicated, my words have, too.
__________

Visit Mark's Black Dolls Matter™  Etsy shop

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.


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Tuesday, July 9, 2019

New Headscarf for Ashanti Keisha II

Ashanti Keisha II originally wore an orange headband

I replaced the orange headband, shown above, that Ashanti Keisha II was wearing with a multicolored (red, green, yellow, and black) scarf remnant as shown in the next photo.

The scarf is tied on one side.

The side tie with ends fluffed out in an almost floral shape is illustrated here.

Back on display
Ashanti Keisha II and her sisters Cleopatra A, Cleopatra B, and Ashanti I are seen along with other dolls in this crowded corner of the doll room.

I like the scarf much better on her  than  the orange headband.

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Friday, July 5, 2019

Will There Be Halle-as-Ariel Dolls?

This photo collage of Halle Bailey and redheads with locs is courtesy of Onlyalisa who wrote, "I’m sure you guys heard about Halle Bailey taking the role as the little Mermaid “live-action movie”... Finger’s double crossed Disney does red locs, because they have much awesomeness to work with.  Hopefully, when the merchandise hit‘s the retail market we get lots of dolls & figures <— I hope."

Onlyaisa, a member of my doll group, created the above photo collage which includes several redheaded loc-wearing women flanked around a large center photo of singer/actress Halle Bailey.  Halle is better known by most as one-half of the singing sister duo Chloe x Halle with Halle being the younger of the two talented singers.  They became an Internet sensation a few years back prior to being signed by BeyoncĂ©'s management company.  Both sisters star in the Freeform sit-com grown-ish, a spin-off of ABC's black-ish.

OnlyAlisa's inspiration for the photo collage was Disney's announcement this week of their decision to cast Halle as Ariel in the live-action musical production of The Little Mermaid.  Most people are excited for Halle and applaud Disney for thinking outside the box.  Disney, like many others, realize that a fictional character, such as a singing mermaid, can be represented in live-action (and in animation) by anyone with the necessary talent, as indicated by Rob Marshall, the producer, who made the following statement.

After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence and substance — plus a glorious singing voice — all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role. [https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/disney-finds-little-mermaid-star-singer-halle-bailey-1220951]

Listen to Halle's glorious singing voice in the following YouTube video where she sings "Unforgettable."




Several Internet users have drawn illustrations of Halle as Ariel.  Twitter user, @BossLogic has imagined Bailey as Ariel to look like this.  Another Twitter user, @AliceXZ illustrated Halle as Ariel like this.  London-based artist, Hayden Williams, envisions Ariel like this.  He wrote in a Facebook post,

#HalleBailey as #Ariel
As someone that grew up on the animated classics, I do prefer when the live action remakes stay true to the originals in many ways, however with TLM, I fully embrace Disney switching things up and casting a black girl to play Ariel. Yes, she had a distinctive look that we all remember, but Ariel’s race was never an integral part of the story. On top of that, she is a mythical creature, so she can be any race. Halle can sing amazingly and is beautiful! Sounds great to me & I am sure she will do a fab job. As long as the cast have amazing chemistry + the story and visuals are amazing, i’ll be happy. Please do share your opinions, but let’s be kind and respectful.
#TheLittleMermaid #Disney #Art

While Williams fully embraces Bailey as Ariel, unfortunately, there are others who feel slighted by Disney's Ariel selection and have voiced their great displeasure with online petitions and at least one known Facebook group (Make Ariel White Again) created in protest.  (?!?)

To counter the petition against Bailey as Ariel, another petition, "Keep Halle Bailey as Ariel" has been started.   (Links to these petitions and Facebook group are not shared here because Disney will do what Disney knows best.)

The original character's red hair does not engrave in stone that all future Ariel characters (animated or human) must be of European descent.  By definition, "In folklore, a mermaid is an aquatic creature with the head and upper body of a female human and the tail of a fish."  Any female human with the appropriate costume can, therefore, portray a mermaid.

In a country where children have been separated from their parents for extended periods with no hope of being reunited; placed in deplorable, crowded conditions in cages with inadequate food, water, and sanitation; with aluminum blankets for cover while they sleep on floors, and God only knows what other physical, mental, and sexual assaults they have and are still facing, for some, the concern over the complexion of a Disney fictional character seems more important.

I remain happy for Halle Bailey, applaud Disney for choosing the best person they felt could portray Ariel, and like Onlyalisa, look forward to seeing the manufacture of dolls and other merchandise to represent the new face of Ariel.  I think red locs would be pretty cool, too.

Congratulations Ms. Bailey!  I know your live-action portrayal of The Little Mermaid will rock!

Read more about Halle at the following links:
IMDb Biography

Chloe_x_Halle


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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Monday, July 1, 2019

Who Mails a Doll in an Envelope?

A 23-inch doll wrapped in a sheet of thin foam was mailed to me inside two paper priority mail envelopes!

I was shocked that Keisha (doll #4 in my collection) arrived unscathed after seeing how the seller chose to package the doll, as illustrated above.  Thankfully, she made it without issues.  That was shock #2 on the date of delivery.  Shock #1 was a notification email sent from the United States Postal Service at 8:57 p.m. that a package had just been delivered.  It was almost 10 p.m. when I read the message and hurried to the front door to find the doll in the corner of the porch packaged as shown.

Here is Keisha as she was after I removed her from the envelopes and before wiping her face and body with a wet towel.

Close-up of Keisha after wiping her face and body off.
As illustrated in the second photo, Keisha arrived with bare feet wearing her original Kente-cloth-print dress, two yellow beaded necklaces, and a brass-tone bracelet.  Some of the inner portions of the bracelet were turning green, so I removed it.

I decided to make sandals for the doll using sheets of brown foam and cork.  A hot glue gun was used to glue the pieces together.


This is the first version of Keisha's completed sandals.

Keisha wears her new sandals in this full-view photo.  Her two yellow beaded necklaces were draped across her body and I added a black headband, which is better visible in the next picture.

In addition to the black headband, I added black rubber bands to the ends of her braids.

Keisha #4, whose historical character I am unsure about, was photographed with Cleopatra A Keisha, Cleopatra B Keisha, and Ashanti Keisha. 

The Third World series of dolls that Keisha is from were dressed as African American historical figures.  It is possible that Keisha #4 is another version of Ashanti Keisha.  Her dress is identical to Ashanti Keisha's dress.  She might be missing a headwrap and an additional cloth that would be worn over the dress.  Her complexion is also darker than Ashanti Keisha's.  In fact, of all four dolls, she has the deepest complexion.  Perhaps the company made a medium brown and a dark brown Ashanti Keisha.  Ashanti Keisha and Keisha #4 have the same hairstyle.

After Ashanti #2 (Keisha #4) was photographed with the other Keisha dolls, I decided to add a cutout design to her sandals similar to what was done for the sandals I made for Ashanti #1 and Cleopatra B.

Using pinking shears, I cut out two strips of brown foam and glued each to the forefoot area of each sandal.

The black headband was replaced with the orange one illustrated here.  Gold-tone round earrings were added.


A gold-tone beaded necklace was draped between the two yellow beaded necklaces that Keisha arrived wearing.  I created a replacement bracelet using a tan beaded necklace by wrapping it around her wrist several times.

Looking as good as she did in approximately 1984 when she entered the doll market, Ashanti Keisha posed for this final photograph prior to joining her sisters in the doll room.
Related Links:
Ashanti Keisha Joins Cleopatra A Keisha

Sandals for Ashanti Keisha

Cleopatra B Keisha Joins Ashanti and Cleopatra A

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Lewisburg, TN August 2019 Doll Show



******This show has been canceled.*******

Sponsored by Marilyn Bloodworth, the first annual doll show and sale will be held at the Recreation Center in Lewisburg, Tennessee on August 17, 2019, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  The vendor fee is $50.  Admission for all is only $1.

For additional information please contact Marilyn Bloodworth directly at Marilyn521@live.com.  She would love to hear from you and receive your support of this family-oriented show.

******This show has been canceled.******
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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Tuesday, June 25, 2019

DesignsbyJimmi for American Girl Dolls


After the post about the dad who rescued his daughter's American Girl doll was published, I shared the link to it with the American Girl Addy Facebook group.  One member wondered if Ms. Taylor (the woman who made a full wardrobe of clothes for the little storm victim's doll) has an Etsy Shop.  At the time, I didn't know the answer to that question, but through a lot of sleuthing, I located her telephone number and was able to find out. 

Yes, she does have an Etsy shop through which she sells American Girl doll clothes.  The name of her Etsy Shop is DesignsbyJimmi.  The URL/link to Ms. Taylor's Shop is:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/DesignsbyJimmi?ref=search_shop_redirect

Please browse her shop.  If you have something in mind for her to make for one of your American Girl dolls or other 18-inch dolls, please send Ms. Taylor a message through Etsy.  She said she has many more outfits already made, but she has only listed a few for now on Etsy.

Ms. Taylor also sews for Barbie.   

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Sibahle Collection Dolls Price Reduction

Sibahle Collection:  Ndanaka, represents a girl with albinism.  Zuri represents a girl with albinism.



In the doll-lightful promotional video, below, some of the Sibahle Collection dolls introduce themselves.  



This multicultural doll collection (which uses Paola Reina dolls) includes dolls that represent the conditions albinism and vitiligo.  A biracial doll is also included in this collection.  These all-vinyl dolls are approximately 13-1/2 inches tall and are currently priced below $25.  The dolls from the Nobuhle collection, which are 20-inches tall are also priced below $25.  Check them out here.


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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Thursday, June 13, 2019

Dad to the Rescue, then Woman Follows Suit

Screen capture of Ohio father who rescued his daughter's doll after a tornado demolished their house
After I read the story and saw the above photograph of the Ohio father who rescued his daughter's doll following an EF-4 tornado that demolished their home, the doll enthusiast in me immediately wondered what type of doll it was.  Upon first glance, it looked like an American girl doll. 

The tornado occurred on Memorial Day in Harrison Township, Ohio.  The super-hero dad rescued the doll for his daughter, whose first name, ironically, is Storm.   Dad, Timothy Walker, is quoted by a WHIOTV-7 reporter as saying, “They [his two children] were in the house with my wife the night of the storm and that doll became a symbol for me of just trying to do what I could to help them recover.”

Storm's doll reportedly is American Girl Truly Me 44.

Follow the link below to the article and video about this doll rescue and a kind-hearted woman, Jamesetta Taylor, who sewed an entire wardrobe for the doll.  American Girl has also offered to give the doll spa treatment in their doll hospital.

Some tragic stories do have happy endings and s/heroes are present in all demographic groups.

*****

UPDATE:  After this post was published, I shared its link to the American Girl Addy Facebook group.  One member wondered if Ms. Taylor (the woman who made the wardrobe for the little girl had an Etsy Shop.)  At the time, I didn't know the answer to that question, but I was able to find out.  Yes, she does!  The name of her Etsy Shop is DesignsbyJimmi.  The URL/link is:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/DesignsbyJimmi?ref=search_shop_redirect

Browse her shop.  If you have something in mind for her to make for one of your American Girl dolls, send her a message through Etsy.  She said she has hundreds of outfits already made, but she only listed a few for now on Etsy.  


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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Friday, June 7, 2019

Curvy Girls Kickstarter


I discovered the Kickstarter for Curvy Girls plus-size fashion dolls recently.  The dolls are appealing and are probably the first-of-their-kind dolls in this size (11-inches) that are fully articulated and represent a woman of size 18-20.  I hope the campaign is a success.  Watch the video and read more about the dolls and promote if you like what you see here.


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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Monday, June 3, 2019

Prims-of-the-Past Nella

Birthday gifts from Betty A. included this lovely doll, Nella, by Barbara Elsleger.

Just as I was about to wind down my birthday month celebration, I received a package to remind me that the celebration had not ended yet.  The package included Nella, shown above, a beautiful 14-inch cloth doll by Barbara Elsleger.  Barbara sells her dolls on eBay under the name Prims-of-the-Past.  Also in the package from Betty was a beautiful birthday card, a leatherette journal with an ink pen, and a large-print edition of Our Daily Bread for the months of April, May, and June.  Individual photos of these items are shown below:

The inscription on the inside of the card is just as beautiful as the words on the outside.
Front:  When you opened your eyes this morning, God had already seen your day unfold--He covered each corner of it with His grace... tucked His love into every moment... and tenderly wrapped it with the quiet strength your heart would need.
Inside left:  You are precious to Me and honored, and I love you.  Isaiah 43:4 TLB
Inside right:  I pray He shows you how special you are through the blessings He gives you today.
My sentiment:  He did and always does.  Thank you, God!  Thank you, Betty!

This beautiful leatherette journal has an ink pen attached.

My mother gives me these from time to time.  I didn't have this quarterly version and did not know Our Daily Bread was available in large print until I received this one.  (Thanks again, Betty!  These old eyes appreciate large print.)

I had just thought about Betty earlier on the day Nella arrived when a doll she made for me a couple of years ago fell from her standing position.  Little did I know then that Betty had been thinking about me, too.


Nella is seen better in this close-up photo.
Nella has delicately painted facial features and a beautiful brown complexion.  Her head swivels and her arms and legs are designed for posing.  Not shown in the close-up is that she has cloth ears.  Her hair is made of dark brown wool accented with a tea-stained cloth ribbon.

This full view of Nella illustrates her separately stitched fingers and painted fingernails.
As indicated, Nella is 14 inches tall.  She wears a white antiqued sweater over her white dress and white pantaloons.


Painted-on Victorian-style black boots complete Nella's "Prims-of-the-Past" look.  She has a brown cardstock hang tag with the artist's name, month, and the year she was made on one side.  "Nella" is written on the opposite side.

This is Nikki (not Nella).

After sending Betty a thank you text and an email (it was too late to call and personally thank her), her reply informed me that Nella has a twin sister.  Nikki (shown immediately above) did not mind parting with Nella in order for Nella to travel to live with me.  How thoughtfully doll-lightful was that?


Jayda and Tootie are my first dolls by Barbara Elsleger.

Even though Nella left one sister behind, she joined two that were already here.  Jayda and Tootie were made in 2010 by Elsleger.

Barbara Elsleger had been the chosen artist to create my doll group's 2010 club doll.  Due to unforeseen circumstances, she was unable to fulfill this commitment.  I asked her if it would be possible for her to make one doll for me and she agreed.  When my package from Barbara arrived in December 2010, there were two dolls in it.  Because it had taken Barbara longer than she proposed to make the one doll, to thank me for my patience, she made my doll a sister!  So now I have three dolls by Elsleger and they are all truly appreciated and loved.


Nella is joined by her two other sisters, Jayda and Tootie.  They will forever enjoy each other's company.

Thank you again, Betty, for thinking about me and please thank Nikki again for allowing Nella to live with us.

Nella is featured on Pinterest with her sister Nikki here.  More of Barbara's dolls are pinned to her Pinterest boards, which can be accessed here.

The doll Betty made for me in 2017 that I referred to earlier in this post, Patty-Jo, can be read about here.

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Suggestion for Mama's Tribute Dress

This photo collage dress contains mostly images of my mother placed on the bodice, the front and back of the skirt, and the sleeves.

In a message from the designer of my mother's tribute dress, first seen here and shown above, Sara Bunn of Bunn Funn Collection, wrote:

If you come across a second hand tutu, cut off the top and use the skirt portion as a slip for under the dress. Will help to poof it out a bit and allow for others to see the images a bit better.
This was such great advice and I wondered (having been a reluctant childhood petticoat wearer myself), "Why didn't I think of that?"

I had planned to check my local thrift store in search of a toddler's size 2 petticoat or tutu but decided to check eBay and Aliexpress first.  I found the two shown below:

This one was purchased first from eBay. It helped to expand the skirt of the dress some.  I wanted the skirt to be even fuller and decided to order another one that I felt would provide  the desired fullness.

This multilayered petticoat/tutu was purchased next from an Aliexpress seller.  It provides an adequate amount of fullness but not for the entire length of the skirt of the dress.
The second petticoat/tutu was too short to expand the entire length of the skirt of the dress.  So instead of replacing the first petticoat with the second one, Smiling Debbie wears both!  She is shown wearing these in the next photo.

The petticoats fill out the skirt and allow better visualization of the images.

This is a closer look at the skirt of the dress worn with both petticoats (the shorter one is underneath the longer one).

Because the images on the sleeves and the writing above each were not fully visible, I added Poly-Fil inside the sleeves to poof them out as well.  Both sleeves are shown next.

With Poly-Fil stuffed inside the left sleeve, the image of my mother, me, and my sister is seen better.  The phrase above reads, "I don't have any favorites."

With the stuffing, images of Mama and my brothers can be better seen on the right sleeve of the dress.  The phrase above it reads, "All of you came out of me."
The before and after photos, combined below, illustrate that use of the petticoats and sleeve stuffing achieves the desired effect -- the images can be seen better.


Thank you so much, Sara, for the suggestion; it works (but I know you knew it would)!

dbg


There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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Friday, May 24, 2019

Glimma Girlz

Glimma Girlz as seen at Family Dollar

I saw the Glimma Girlz dolls at Family Dollar last week.  Made by the same company that makes Sparkle Girlz dolls and fashions, Funville, these 11-1/2-inch fashion dolls were available in a variety of fashions for $5.75.  Because I collect fashion doll clones and because I like this doll's head sculpt, I asked my grandson, who was with me, to choose which one I should buy.

The chosen one
My grandson chose the one wearing the asymmetrical faux leather black skirt with black and white striped midriff top.  I asked him several times if he was certain this was the one I should buy.  He continued to answer, "Yes."

Once at home, the Glimma Girlz doll was removed from the box and photographed still attached to the box liner.
After removing the doll from the box, I found her pencil-thin, shapeless legs very disappointing.  "She's still a pretty doll and I can always rebody her," I thought.  Still attached to the liner in the above photograph, is a black handbag and silver star-shaped brush.


Close-up of her super thin legs.
Removing the doll and her two accessories from the box liner was a snap.  She was attached with a large rubber band around her waist.  Plastic fasteners held her legs and accessories in place.  These were removed with scissors.

She has long straight rooted black hair.
The hair was held under one large rubber band that was wrapped around her shoulders from front-to-back.

The sides of her hair were pulled to the back and held in place with a rubber band underneath the loose hair
The front of her hair is parted in the middle.  A small section of each side is pulled back underneath the rest of her loose hair and held together with a rubber band, as illustrated above.

I undressed her to see if she can wear Sparkle Girlz clothing.

The distributor's name and serial number are branded on her back as illustrated here.
As indicated, Glimma Girlz dolls are manufactured by Funville but Midwoods Brand, LLC, a subsidiary of Family Dollar Stores, Inc., is the distributor as noted by the stamp on this doll's back.  Glimma Girlz dolls are possibly a Family Dollar exclusive.

Before I could try one Sparkle Girlz fashion on this doll, I noticed black stains on the front and back of her legs!  Ugh!

Black stains are on the front of both legs.
The black stains shown above correspond with the asymmetrical front hemline of the black faux leather skirt where it touched the doll's legs in the stained areas.

Black stains are also on the back of both legs.
For a split second, I thought about using an acne cream with 10% benzoyl peroxide to remove the stains.  I decided instead to box her up and return to the store, which is what I did as well as explain the reason for the return to the clerk.  I wondered if I should buy another wearing a different outfit.  "No," was my answer because the thin legs bother me and there is really no need for me to invest in a body for the head.

So if you see these dolls at your Family Dollar, steer clear of any that are dressed in black clothes.


dbg


There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
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